October 8, 2012
Cronyism in the Oil and Gas Business
PKR secretary general Dato’ Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said oil producing states would be able to operate their respective oil operation through state government-linked companies should Pakatan Rakyat come to power.
Saifuddin said this was different than the current practice.“That is because the companies operating on oil fields are owned by UMNO leaders’ family. For example, two oil fields in Kelantan are owned by Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s children,” he said at a ceramah with PAS Deputy President Mohamad Sabu in Kota Bharu yesterday.
The new deal, according to Saifuddin, forms part of PR’s pledge if it wins the next general election.In Kelantan, the Machang member of parliament said there were 23 oil fields yet to be explored.
“Every oil field is estimated to be worth RM3 billion. So to avoid those oil fields being controlled by UMNO leaders’ family, the government in Putrajaya must be changed,” he added.
UMNO Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin had spoken out against the idea, saying it would affect the government’s tax revenue and profits for national oil company Petronas.
Earlier this week, the Kelantan state government, locked in a legal battle over unpaid oil royalties, was allowed by the Federal Court to pose questions of law surrounding its suit against Petronas.